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The Essential Syreeta

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Album Review

The reissue labels were never very kind to Syreeta, resulting in the sad fact that compilations remain the best (if not the only) way to hear what made her recordings so special. The Essential Syreeta is the best of a tiny lot, with a passable selection of material from her '70s and '80s records. For some unknown reason, the compilers virtually ignored her fine 1972 debut; only two songs are included, one of them (fortunately) her sweet, grooving remake of Stevie Wonder's "I Love Every Little Thing About You" (first heard earlier that year on Stevie's Music of My Mind). The collection does a much better job with 1974's Stevie Wonder Presents Syreeta, presenting her best songs ("Spinnin' and Spinnin'" and "Your Kiss Is Sweet," both written with Wonder) as well as three other solid tracks. Most of the rest comes from the period 1977 to 1981, when she recorded some good work — like the R&B hits "Harmour Love" and "Let's Make a Deal" — but never approached her early-'70s heyday. The final blow is the absence of "With You I'm Born Again," her fine hit duet with Billy Preston from 1981. Yes, it's recommended, but that's only until a real compilation comes along.

Customer Reviews

Grossly underated artist

This is an excellent compilation, and a great price, but as i-Tunes said...........i wish we could have all the original Syreeta albums available. Unique and sadly missed.

God Bless Syreeta


Born: 03 August 1946 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s

Some performers, such as Florence Ballard, were ground up in the Motown hitmaking machine -- and a few, like Syreeta, found their callings and success in other parts of the music business. Born in Pittsburgh, Rita Wright had her sights set on a performing career, and luckily her family moved to Detroit when she was in her teens and she had the talent to back up the goal. She came to the company as a secretary and was later discovered by Brian Holland, one third of the Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting...
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The Essential Syreeta, Syreeta
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